Halp Pick out a car for dbzeag

dbzeag

Wants to kiss you where it stinks
Jun 9, 2006
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I am a needy git.

When I go shopping for a car, I spend almost a year, if not more, deciding what to get. Afetr learning from my previous mistakes, I would like to pick up a car with the following criteria (reasoning can be explained if requested):

- Small(ish) - I am coming from a Honda Fit and a Mazda Protege before that and I don't like or need larger cars. Easier to park, clean, see out of, drive, etc.

- Seats 5 - Chim's car can seat 5 in a pinch, but it's too small and my Fit is just a bit too small for that, as well.

- 4 doors - To make it easier to fit people and/or cargo. My car is the donkey between chim and I.

- Fuel efficient - My daily commute is lots of fast stop and go (50mph zones with lights every half mile or longer) so something that gets me around 28mpg would be great. My Fit gets 31mpg or so when I am thrashing it to get to speed on my commute.

- Keyless Remote Entry - Maybe a luxury but since I have owned them in my last two cars, I have never locked myself out.

- Power windows - Easier for dumping the heat out of the car.

- CD player, or CD player that reads mp3, or AUX in - The best would be with all 3

- Automatic - Yes, yes I know, "What a fag". Well I had a stick in the Fit and it's a pain. Autos now get just as good gas mileage (more often than not, more) and have higher resale value.

- (want) Hatchback - For easy and size of cargo capacity.

- A/C - Obviously for Texas, although I haven't turned mine on yet....


I am looking for a car that's a bit nippy, cheeky, but not a full on sports car. I want something that I can quickly dart around a corner before the light turns but does not get upset by a bump in mid corner. Since this will be our long-distance cruiser, a comfy highway ride and steering would be nice.

I am a geek with tech so I would love a car with something like Ford's surprisingly good Sync system.

I am in a warmer climate now so I don't need seat heaters or things like that.

Most importantly I am looking for around $20K. And something that isn't first year of a generation (I am still getting burned for that currently). Yes I can buy used, and I am open for that option.

My choices thusfar include the following:

- 2011 Ford Fiesta SE hatch w/ Auto and Sync - Already violating my rule to not go with a car in it's first year, but the features and price ($15500 before tax and title) are too good to pass up. 29/40mpg and it's European character are too good to pass up, too. Reliability will be a huge question, though.

- 2010 Ford Escape XLS w/ Auto and Sync - The 2009 would be first gen with the new engine and transmission, so I pick the 2010. I can get one for around $21000. Decent mileage for what it is, and very roomy. Proven reliability.

- 2011 Hyundai Tucson GLS w/ Auto - Around $21K as well, better mileage than the Escape, although it is smaller on the inside. Looks much better and has a better warranty.

- 2011 Suzuki SX4 Crossover w/ Auto and AWD - Updated in 2010 this is a very cheap AWD with a great warranty, mileage better than the Escape, and nippy personality. Test driving a 2008 it was surprisingly comfortable to ride and with a 5th gear in the auto should be quieter on the highway. Under $20K with tons of kit.

- 2010 Ford Focus w/ Auto and Sync - Simple car that's cheap (around $14K) that's decent all around with good mileage and Sync. Nothing that special.

- 2010 Hyundai Elantra Touring w/ Auto - A terrible shame the supreme 6sp auto isn't available in this (yet) but the car is quite solid and roomy with the great warranty, but it is the most wagony.

- 2010 Kia Forte EX w/ Fuel Economy Package - Fun and cheap with great warranty. Great level of tech and very modern in design and function, if a bit plain on the outside.

Thoughts? Questions?
 

dbzeag

Wants to kiss you where it stinks
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why are you buying new? that's largely considered a waste of money
What used cars do you recommend? The Forte isn't old enough to be used, nor is the Fiesta. I could pick up a Focus from 2009 and be in my rules.

I haven't mentioned a Mazda 3 hatch as an option, which it is, and that would be ok used as well. Used kind of scares me when a tech-in-training for Toyota of all places was taught parts have built in 100K lives and anything more is bonus time for them. Used would obviously be closer to the 100K mark than new. I could go for a 2007 - 2009 model with that.

As for the Escape, I want the better tranny and engine in the newer model (more power AND better gas mileage as well as the possibility of sync).
 

shamwow

Curly_Sue
Oct 13, 2004
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What used cars do you recommend? The Forte isn't old enough to be used, nor is the Fiesta. I could pick up a Focus from 2009 and be in my rules.

I haven't mentioned a Mazda 3 hatch as an option, which it is, and that would be ok used as well. Used kind of scares me when a tech-in-training for Toyota of all places was taught parts have built in 100K lives and anything more is bonus time for them. Used would obviously be closer to the 100K mark than new. I could go for a 2007 - 2009 model with that.

As for the Escape, I want the better tranny and engine in the newer model (more power AND better gas mileage as well as the possibility of sync).
13 used 2010 fortes in my area starting at ~$14k
I'd be surprised if your area was any different
http://www.autotrader.com/fyc/searchresults.jsp?lastStartYear=1981&num_records=25&search_lang=en&page_location=findacar::ispsearchform&search_type=used&distance=100&address=30303&marketZipError=false&style_flag=1&make=KIA&model=FORTE&make2=&start_year=1981&end_year=2011&min_price=&max_price=&seller_type=b&transmission=&engine=&drive=&doors=&fuel=&max_mileage=&color=&keywordsrep=&keywordsfyc=&keywords_display=&sort_type=priceDESC&body_code=0&certified=&advanced=&highlightFirstMakeModel=&showZipError=y&default_sort=priceDESC&awsp=false&systime=&rdm=1274391239048
 

polo

Flaccid Member
Aug 1, 2007
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I can get the same amount of car in a Kia Forte for about $2K less with a longer warranty (and based off my Honda Fit/Jazz, I would need it).
I would go for the Kia Forte then.

I have an obsession with Hondas, hence my trumpetting of them.
 

dbzeag

Wants to kiss you where it stinks
Jun 9, 2006
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I would go for the Kia Forte then.

I have an obsession with Hondas, hence my trumpetting of them.
I loved them until I owned one. I cannot stand my Fit only because it is arguably the least reliable car I have ever owned, among other reasons. I have a nice long rant about it if you are interested.